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Lula Retains Polling, Betting Market Lead As Run-Off Looms


Leftist opposition candidate Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva remains the favourite to win the Brazilian presidency in the run off election taking place on 30 October. The last 10 opinion polls conducted in the run-up to the 24 October blackout gave Lula an average lead of 4% over right-wing incumbent President Jair Bolsonaro.

  • Betting markets also favour Lula, with the former president presently holding a 69.9% implied probability of winning the vote up from a recent low of 53.8% on 23 October according to data from Smarkets.
Chart 1. Head-to-Head Opinion Polling, % and 6-Poll Moving Average

Source: Parana Pesquisas, Ipec, Ipespe, Atlas, Ideia, Datafolha, Futura, Quaest, PoderData, CNT/MDA, MNI

  • Opinion polls remain somewhat controversial in Brazil. There is an effort by some right-wing legislators to punish pollsters that publish polling that does not match later results (polling ahead of the first round showed Lula ahead of Bolsonaro by double digits, with the final margin coming in at just 5%).

Chart 2. Betting Market Implied Probability of Winning Brazilian Presidential Election, %

Source: Smarkets

  • There remains the notable prospect of post-election violence in either potential post-election outcome. Bolsonaro has consistently railed against electronic voting, alleging that it raises the risk of fraud.

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